For six weeks, I am teaching a course at Anser Charter School in Boise called the Great Veggie Challenge for students in grades 1-3. The course description starts by saying:
Are you ready to take the challenge and prove to yourself and your parents that you can eat – and actually like – vegetables? During this course, we’ll jazz up the old routine by learning how to cook traditional vegetables in new and different ways. We’ll even experiment with some mystery vegetables you may have never tasted before.
Week number three was a blast! We went on a field trip to two local organic grocers — Boise Co-op and Whole Foods — to see what we could learn about vegetables that we didn’t already know.
At the Boise Co-op, we learned about where local produce is sourced, what vegetables are in season when and how different vegetables are grown. We also got to sample some unusual-looking-rarely-used-in-everyday-cooking vegetables. Specifically, we tried sunchokes (yum!), watermelon radishes (a little spicy for the little ones) and celery root (also well-received).
As you can see from the photo below, the children were eager-as-always to sample new and interesting foods!
Henly greeted us with enthusiasm at Whole Foods, kicking off the tour in in the produce section. Below he is quizzing the children on their veggie knowledge.
The children then got to view a whole salmon close-up by the gentleman who was later described as, “Dude, you rock.”
Though the kids might have stayed the rest of the afternoon, if allowed, we finished up the tour at the juice bar, where they got to sample two smoothies. I have never seen anyone quite as excited as these children to try a very green-looking combination of spirulina, kale, apple juice, strawberries and bananas.
Many thanks to our local markets for making the afternoon so special!